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Old 02-15-2009, 01:35 PM
 
12 posts, read 36,383 times
Reputation: 11
Default MA Coast Areas-Best Place to Raise a Family?

We are a family of 5 (3 young children starting school) and we want to relocate to MA. We'd like to find a smaller Family Oriented town with great schools, friendly people, near the coast (not sure yet on north coast or south coast), lower crime rates. Commuting is not an issue, but I would like something within 2 hours of urban shopping, restaurants and museums (car or train, it doesn't matter). Any help is really appreciated!
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Old 02-15-2009, 04:33 PM
 
Location: Boston
5,269 posts, read 8,612,940 times
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What's your budget? I Just about every town on the coast of Massachusetts (with the exception of the bigger coastal cities and portions of the Cape) fits what you're looking for (to varying degress), but many things vary depending on cost.

If you have a high budget (say, $500,000+... more if you want waterfront property), then you can do well anywhere, but if you want to try and get a little more bang for your buck in Mass, then you'll have to get picky.

I'll make a brief list of places to look before you respond about the budget issue, but it'll be something to start with.

Manchester. beautiful little community on the coast of the North Shore. This area can be pricey, but schools are pretty good. You're about 35-40 minutes out of downtown Boston, but you're close to Burlington and the commercialized strip of route one for suburban shopping. There is commuter rail and highway access nearby.

Rockport: A little further out of Boston (to the North), and still a bit pricey, but this town has an excellent downtown area that's quite walkable and scenic. It's a bit busier than Manchester, but not overcrowded. I know nothing of the schools here. This is another town where rail access is not far away and you're not too far from major interstates as well. The primary suburban and urban amenities are going to be found in the same places as they would be for Manchester.

The South Shore communities in the vicinity of Duxbury, Hull, Scituate, Hingham and Cohassett are beautiful. With the exception of Hull (which is a bit more densely settled and more affordable yet not cheap), most of them are pretty pricey and suburban. They are picturuesque, close to rail transit and highways (Route 3 which is annoyingly crowded during rush hour) and have excellent schools. This is a real nice area.

Kingston/Plymouth. This is a beautiful area. Plymouth (this goes without saying) is a very historic place and has an enjoyable downtown area and some nice residential areas. Kingston, right next door, is a bit quieter. These areas are by no means cheap, but there are some good values to be had. I don't know enough about schools here to comment. This area is 40+ minutes out of Boston and there is rail access.

Marion/ Mattapoisett. These are nice towns in Massachuetts' South Coast region. They are about an hour drive out of Boston, but only about 1/2 hour to 40 minutes East of Providence, Rhode Island which has a LOT of urban shopping and amenities. The city of New Bedford is right nearby and offers a good deal in the ways of culture. New Bedford has a symphony, an art museum, whaling museum, ocean explorium, art galleries, restaurants, bars, clubs all surrounding a very nice downtown, part of which is a National Historic Park (Whaling District National Historic Park). I wouldn't live in New Bedford as the schools are terrible and crime is an issue in some of the outlying neighborhoods, but it's a great place to visit and one of the regions better kept secrets). Suburban Shopping can be found at nearby malls in Dartmouth and Taunton as well as shopping plazas in Fairhaven, Wareham, Dartmouth and Taunton. The schools in Mattapoisett and Marion are excellent. Houses right on the water can be pretty expensive, but you can find a nice deal just a little ways from the beach.

South Dartmouth and Westport. These towns are beautiful and some of the areas better kept secrets. They lie about 20-25 minutes East of Providence, 5-10 minutes from New Bedford, and about 50 minutes to 1 hour South of Boston so those cities are where you'll find most of your urban amenities. The schools here are not excellent (Dartmouth's aren't terrible, but not stellar), but the housing costs are a bit lower here (as the areas are relatively undiscovered). You could find an excellent deal on a home in these two towns. If schools are a big concern, there is an abundance of private schools for all grade levels in the area. The beaches in this region of the South Coast (same with Marion and Mattapoisett) have the longest ocean swim season in Massachusetts as they face South and are protected by Cape Cod from the colder currents that come down from the maritime provinces of Canada.

This is just a start, if you give us more specifics we can narrow it down (or recommend some more options). Good luck!
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Old 02-16-2009, 02:27 PM
 
12 posts, read 36,383 times
Reputation: 11
Default Thank You for so much help!

Thank you for helping me with all the information you provided Irfox and Scarletfire. You've both really helped bring my research down to a manageable level and I can't tell you how much it is appreciated. Thank you so much for spending so much time helping me! You are great people and I hope MA is as friendly as you.

Thanks!!!!!!
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Old 04-29-2009, 07:34 PM
 
830 posts, read 289,842 times
Reputation: 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThirtysomethingGal View Post
Thank you for helping me with all the information you provided Irfox and Scarletfire. You've both really helped bring my research down to a manageable level and I can't tell you how much it is appreciated. Thank you so much for spending so much time helping me! You are great people and I hope MA is as friendly as you.

Thanks!!!!!!
Did you find a place?

My vote is for Marion/Mattapoisett

check it out especially this time of year, Especially good schools.
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